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Belgian Blues

Frankie

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talldog":3ndhicjg said:
What do you'll think of this breed !!!!!! :help:

The first thing that comes to my mind is "calving difficulty." Second thing is they're a speciality breed and don't fit the demands of the commercial beef market well.

They're a double muscled breed, so I assume they produce tender, lean beef. But remember that the USDA grading system is based on marbling. Marbled beef is more valuable than non-marbled. They're a big breed. If they're too big and don't "fit the box", packers will no roll them.
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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It amazes me that they still exist. They are so heavily muscled (double muscled) that the bulls can hardly mount a female, and a female that is anything higher percentage than a 1/2 blood, pretty much needs to calve using caesarian. :shock: Why would anyone propagate them?
A breeder had a bull calf on display at NY Empire Farm Days. When it was time to go home, they backed the horse trailer up, and they literally had to pick up his front feet & place them on the trailer floor because he could not lift his leg that high. Than they pushed him up & picked up his back legs. Now that's a real prize to have on display!
They remind me of a pig.
 

Aero

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Frankie":2neypw7q said:
They're a big breed. If they're too big and don't "fit the box", packers will no roll them.

they're usually on the smaller frame side... FS 4 or so. lots of meat i assume, but i havent really seen any numbers other than well over 60% hanging wt.
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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Aero - I didn't bother posting that, but you are correct. They are a pretty small breed. There was a big kick for a while, selling bulls/semen to dairies. The half blood calves were supposed to come easy & thicken up well. Don't know if they did - but you sure don't see them being promoted or used any more around here.
Why were you (talldog) asking?? Wanting to crossbreed to them? Raise PB for a novelty? just curious?
 

Frankie

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I guess we can quibble about frame or what's "small" and what's "big" all day, but according to the OSU breeds of livestock site:

The Belgian Blue is a large sized animal with rounded outline and prominent muscles. The shoulder, back, loin and rump are heavily muscled. The back is straight, rump is sloping, tail set is prominent and skin is fine. It has fine but strong legs and can walk easy.
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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Frankie":2b71ghpu said:
I guess we can quibble about frame or what's "small" and what's "big" all day, but according to the OSU breeds of livestock site:

The Belgian Blue is a large sized animal with rounded outline and prominent muscles. The shoulder, back, loin and rump are heavily muscled. The back is straight, rump is sloping, tail set is prominent and skin is fine. It has fine but strong legs and can walk easy.
:lol: :lol: I see where you are coming from. I guess I would question their statement - especially the "strong legs and can walk easy". That's a hoot from what I've seen. The "large sized animal" may come from the fact that they might weigh up there with their double muscling, but they are a smaller statue animal - and that is what they "promoted" - small cattle for easy calving!
 

alacattleman

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talldog":25ud90cd said:
Friend of mine is cross breeding and trying to get me to try--- Look like s*** to me !!! :???:
oh well, if we're just going on looks then i would'nt mind em..
 

Frankie

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Jeanne - Simme Valley":16s3981q said:
Frankie":16s3981q said:
I guess we can quibble about frame or what's "small" and what's "big" all day, but according to the OSU breeds of livestock site:

The Belgian Blue is a large sized animal with rounded outline and prominent muscles. The shoulder, back, loin and rump are heavily muscled. The back is straight, rump is sloping, tail set is prominent and skin is fine. It has fine but strong legs and can walk easy.
:lol: :lol: I see where you are coming from. I guess I would question their statement - especially the "strong legs and can walk easy". That's a hoot from what I've seen. The "large sized animal" may come from the fact that they might weigh up there with their double muscling, but they are a smaller statue animal - and that is what they "promoted" - small cattle for easy calving!

I thought you might get a kick out of that description considering the one you saw being loaded. :) Most of the info on that OSU website comes from the breed associations. So you won't see much/any negative info there on any breed.
 

RD-Sam

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Aero":h62mqrcg said:
Frankie":h62mqrcg said:
They're a big breed. If they're too big and don't "fit the box", packers will no roll them.

they're usually on the smaller frame side... FS 4 or so. lots of meat i assume, but i havent really seen any numbers other than well over 60% hanging wt.

I think this on is alot bigger than a FS 4, either that or that guy is aweful small? :lol2:
http://www.doobybrain.com/2008/02/15/be ... super-cow/
 

Jeanne - Simme Valley

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I agree - those "super cows" were very large. Not what I have seen at displays & at our bull test. They couldn't even come close to making weight on test. Like all things, there are good & bad in all breeds - but, even the breed assn. will tell you that you can expect to deliver the calf by caesarian - at least they used to. Things change. Still think they look like a pig - excuse me - HOG.
 

regolith

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There was a big kick for a while, selling bulls/semen to dairies. The half blood calves were supposed to come easy & thicken up well.

I saw a fair few of the crosses before leaving Britain, mid-late nineties. As far as I know there were no calving issues when crossed to Friesian - no more than straight Holstein-Friesian breeding at any rate.
Still common to see the 'blue' cows hanging out with dairy herds in this country - pet cows, farmers milk 'em. I don't ask...
 

Keren

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I think there are two types of belgian blue ... a very extreme type, the huge frame, huge muscle, dont walk round real well, and need caesars. And a bit more conservative type, smaller framed, more mobile, not as many calving difficulties.

I have personally seen a really top notch fullblood herd here in Australia, moderate framed animals and caesars were NOT the norm. Most of the cows calved on their own.
 

aussie_cowgirl

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I was thinking the same Keren. Almost every year we get a 1/2 or 1/4 blood steer at the show and they are beautiful. I just found this on the Australian Association website, bulls from the Belgian Blue show they had. They are more muscled than average cattle but aren't ridiculous.
 

ANAZAZI

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They are a fine terminal breed, with easy calvings when the bb is the father.
These cattle are very sensitive to being overfed, because they muscle up so easily, and become so heavy on their feet. And also overfed females have problems calving, as the calves easily get to big if the cow is on feed, and the birth canal gets narrow when there are exessive muscle and fat around it. The belgian breeders know this, but instead of keeping the cattle in a decent body score, they order cesarian in advance, and carry feed to the pregnant cow with both hands.
My friend Roger breeds a hundred cows to bb bulls and this year he lost three calves, and last year only two. He feeds his cattle only hay, or silage mixed with straw.
 
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